3 of 5 people found the following review helpful
This review is from: Boiler Room [VHS] (VHS Tape)
The story of Seth Davis (Giovanni Ribisi), a young college dropout trying to make his father (Ron Rifkin) proud of him. The story starts with Seth running a successful small-time casino out of his house much to the dismay of his father when he finds out. So Seth decides to start at the bottom and become a stockbroker trainee. Alas the brokerage house is a "chop shop," one of those brokerages on the fringe that sell a variety of very risky and easily manipulated stocks to unsuspecting rubes over the phone. These include penny stocks, unregistered and letter stocks that the brokerage sells from its own inventory at a tremendous mark up. Seth starts as a cold caller while he studies for his series 7 exam (test for a broker license). Seth becomes very good at his job, but he knows something is very wrong about his employer, and that he is cheating people. But Seth is really a decent person after all and proves himself later. This film is often compared to "Wall Street," but it is really more like Glengarry Glen Ross only with stocks instead of real estate. Generally fine performances by the entire cast, good dramatic tension and realistic. The family conflicts that lie at the heart of the drama are moving. The story line bears an incredible resemblance to the book "License to Steal" by Anonymous. The moral: never never buy a stock from anyone over the phone who cold calls you. If it sounds too good to be true, it is.